Reef Central Online Community

Home Forum Here you can view your subscribed threads, work with private messages and edit your profile and preferences View New Posts View Today's Posts

Find other members Frequently Asked Questions Search Reefkeeping online magazine for marine aquarists Support our sponsors and mention Reef Central

Go Back   Reef Central Online Community > General Interest Forums > New to the Hobby
Register Blogs FAQ Calendar Mark Forums Read


User Tag List

Thread Tools
Old 01/24/2007, 05:31 PM   #1
Registered Member
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Brampton, Ontario, Canada
Posts: 101
Lionfish advice

Looking for some advice on a Volitan Lionfish. We have a 96g fish only tank, and are looking at purchasing a baby Lionfish from the LFS. My questions are:

1. How quickly do they grow? Our current tank would not be suitable for a full grown fish but we are planning to upgrade to a 180 or more within the next year.

2. If kept properly fed are they likely to eat other fish? I guess I am most concerned about the Mandarin Goby, one smallish clownfish, and the feeder shrimp (which is fairly large).

I know there are no guarantees, but I'm looking for some general advice based on your experiences. Am I just tempting fate??

Thanks in advance,

StephM33 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01/24/2007, 05:45 PM   #2
Premium Member
EdKruzel's Avatar
Join Date: Oct 2001
Location: Atlanta, GA
Posts: 7,384
The Mandarin has toxic skin and if eaten will kill (or at least make a lion very sick) your lion.
Small anything (that can fit in their large mouths) will be preyed upon.
You need to make compatible purchases for mature sized fish.
The P. volitan is the largest of the lions and can make an easy meal of most clowns especially without a host anemone.

If you have one of the larger species of clown, such as a Maroon, Tomato or Clarks, then it is possible to purchase a small dwarf species or even a nice P. antennata.

When you find yourself in "Deep Water" it's best to keep your mouth shut!

Current Tank Info: 65RR Cube Mixed Reef
EdKruzel is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01/24/2007, 05:54 PM   #3
Registered Member
BurntOutReefer's Avatar
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: Granada Hills
Posts: 4,376
even the small one could be trouble....count your shrimp gone....
They grow based on how much you feed them....(based on water temp/metabolism)....but they and and will grow fast.

If you are intent on lions, then IMO... the Volitan is the way to go.
Beautiful, eye catching Reef safe (as far as corals) fish....

BurntOutReefer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01/24/2007, 05:57 PM   #4
Registered Member
davocean's Avatar
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: San Diego, CA
Posts: 14,655
I'd stick w/ a dwarf.
They'll eat anything that fits in it's mouth, and they're all mouth!
The volitan I had probably would have eaten the mandarin....and died.
Eating machine!

There's a fine line between owning your tank and your tank owning you!

Current Tank Info: SCA 120g RR Starfire, Tunze silence 1073.02 return, 40g sump w/ fuge, SWC Extreme 160 cone skimmer,Geismann reflexx 4xT5, 2x Panorama Pro LED strips, Vortech MP40QD
davocean is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01/24/2007, 06:52 PM   #5
Registered Member
jpitts101's Avatar
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Ardmore
Posts: 1,176
dont lions generally starve?? not starve as far as eating but not eating the right foods. most people think its ok to feed a lion golfish and freshwater feeders when generally you can starve a lion by doing so. im not a pro but i believe you have to feel them saltwater fish or train them to eat frozen. you may want to check that out before buying too. just a thought.

J.D. Pitts
when in doubt pull it out!!!!

Current Tank Info: 180 sps dominant
jpitts101 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01/24/2007, 08:33 PM   #6
Registered Member
piscivorous's Avatar
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Groton, N.Y.
Posts: 801
yeah...if you really want a lion...get rid of everything else.....the volitans are my favorite and have been since I was like 5 years old. Someday I plan to have a 220 gallon just to keep a volitans and a few other goodies. They'll eat anything they can fit in their mouths...and their mouths get surprisingly big for the size of their body. Don't feed them goldfish, but do some research on a "proper" lionfish diet. The best thing to do early on is train them to feed on frozen may need to start them off with live stuff, but you'll want to get them away from the live foods as soon as possible. There is lots of info on them so just do your research before hand. It is good you are looking at the 180 they they get almost as wide as they do long....looking at 18" from what I've read...I saw a 9" volitans recently......I couldn't take my eyes off of it....I've seen plenty of other beautiful and rare fish...beautiful angles etc....but I still consider the volitans to be the most stunning and beautiful fish.

piscivorous is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01/24/2007, 08:57 PM   #7
Registered Member
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: colorado
Posts: 14
I had two lions in my 180 (both about 5 in long) I alos had a 5 in grouper, he ate a 1.5 inch clown within 2 hours of putting him in the tank. I also had emerald crabs and the lion left them alone. But I feed them freeze dried shrimp and some frozen fish and they grow pretty quick, and seemed very healthy, and very tame, feed them by hand. Only reason I don't have them is due my tank tank being poisoned by bleach from a piece of coral. I would say if you have small fish, they would probably eat them. When there hungry they eat!

coreef2006 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01/24/2007, 10:06 PM   #8
Registered Member
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Brampton, Ontario, Canada
Posts: 101
Thank you everyone. I also found a great thread specifically on Lionfish on the Fish Only Forum, and between that and the feedback you've given here, I think we've made our decision to wait until we upgrade to the larger tank, and then we can think about making the smaller tank devoted to the Lion, and ensure that all the species in the tank are suitable. (we really wouldn't have cried if the damsels became food, but we certainly don't want the shrimp, clown or especially the Mandarin to become dinner!)

From all the research I've done over the last few hours it seems that the Lion is friendly and quite passive, and generally only ends up eating a fish that strays right in front of it while it's hungry. They certainly don't seem to chase any species around, it's more like how a toad will catch a fly.

We also don't want the Lion to completely dominate the tank, and based on how quickly everyone is saying they can grow, it looks as though that may happen before we are ready with the larger tank.

So our "final answer" is that in the spirit of tank harmony we will make ourselves wait for this gorgeous fish until the timing is right.

thanks everyone!

StephM33 is offline   Reply With Quote

Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On

Forum Jump

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 05:22 AM.

TapaTalk Enabled

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.4
Copyright ©2000 - 2021, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Powered by Searchlight © 2021 Axivo Inc.
Use of this web site is subject to the terms and conditions described in the user agreement.
Reef CentralTM Reef Central, LLC. Copyright 1999-2014
User Alert System provided by Advanced User Tagging v3.3.0 (Pro) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2021 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.